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Our Own Worst Enemies II
by La Shawn Barber
18 December 2003Scam

A black person who claims that black America’s biggest problem is not racism but its own immorality is a revolutionary in today’s politically correct climate.


“Over a decade ago, I began to realize that the so-called black leaders like Jesse Jackson, Louis Farrakhan, Al Sharpton, and others were lying about why blacks are in trouble today,” writes a former welfare recipient-turned-ordained minister, mentor, entrepreneur and man of integrity.

Reverend Jesse Lee Peterson, author of SCAM: How the Black Leadership Exploits Black America, has written a book in which truth fills every page. As I wrote in the first part of my review of SCAM, a black person who claims that black America’s biggest problem is not racism but its own immorality is a revolutionary in today’s politically correct climate. “My message to the black man and to the black community is one of hope and encouragement, not one of anger and despair.”

Our Own Worst Enemies

Black leaders have brainwashed blacks into hating whites for their problems, and this racial hatred has continued to enslave blacks, says Rev. Peterson. But blacks are their own worst enemies, handicapping themselves by listening to black leaders. To continue perks and corporate shakedowns, limousine liberals like Jesse Jackson have to keep stirring the pot of hatred. “If blacks do not abandon this mentality and this rage against white America—and if we do not accept responsibility for our own failures—we will forever remain defeated,” he contends.

How the Government Undermined the Black Father's Role

As someone who grew up without a father, Rev. Peterson understands what accepting responsibility means. He’s an eyewitness to what fatherlessness does to children.

The welfare system bears most of the blame in undermining the black father’s role. Anyone objectively examining the history of the welfare system can see that it’s one of the main reasons black men are no longer heads of their households. Forty years ago, the welfare roles exploded and the system strongly discouraged black men from remaining in the homes and encouraged single women to remain on welfare. “The welfare system also allowed men to impregnate women without guilt or commitment to them or their children.”

And the consequences still reverberate throughout the black community. Although the system has been reformed, the effects of dependency have remained. The most shameful is that the social stigma against illegitimacy has all but vanished in the black community.

Why Are Black Women So Mean?

“If you go to any post office or bank today and deal with the typical black woman you find there, you’ll know why the title of this chapter is so appropriate.” Amen! So begins my favorite chapter of the book, “Why Black Women Are So Mean.”

Rev. Peterson admits he’s partly joking, but does attribute the bitterness and resentfulness of some black women to being single parents who must play many roles: provider, protector, nurturer and disciplinarian. Not only are they challenged by these issues, they must also deal with being abandoned by their irresponsible men.

Adding to the strain are the dreary statistics for female-headed households. Fatherless boys are twice as likely to end up in jail even when race and income are held constant. Regardless of income and race, there is a strong correlation with the number of single parent families in a community and the crime rate.

Restoring the Family

I could write 10 more columns about SCAM—it’s that important—but I’ll end the review with the most important insight. Throughout the book, Rev. Peterson offers biblical prescriptions for curing the ills of broken families and communities. The final chapter is a “blueprint for true freedom,” which includes restoring God’s order to the family (husband is the head of the wife, as Christ is the head of his church), committing to prayer, forgiveness, marriage, repudiating “black culture,” embracing entrepreneurship, and most importantly, rejecting black “leaders” and following Christ.

Rev. Peterson urges blacks to return to belief in God and confronts what in today’s society is deemed taboo: sin. He offers biblical solutions to that age-old problem and its consequences on the black family.

Only Christ can set us free from hatred, bitterness, resentment and our own sin. He says, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son does remain forever. So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed." John 8:34-36.

That’s a prescription for us all.

La Shawn Barber, a columnist for American Daily, reviews books for Townhall.com. Visit her weblog at http://lashawnbarber.blogspot.com.

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